Have I lost my mind?!

I am pretty sure I have not, although I am struggling to explain why I think signing up for the Eagle Up Ultra 24 hour endurance run is a good idea. RunCanton

The decision that needs to be made is 50k or 50 miles, both seem really really far to my brain.

As of right now the plan is for this to go down, but first I must focus on my next bucket list race.   Lincoln Marathon, I am running the half and pretty darn excited to be able to finish on the 50 yard line of Memorial Stadium!!

Hawkeye 25K

Yesterday I ran the Hawkeye 25K in Solon IA. The first 7 miles or so followed a crushed limestone path along Lake McBride.


We then had a water crossing, at points the water was well above ankle deep and cold. At race start it was around 23 degrees, sunny but certainly cold.

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Immediately following the water crossing, we climbed up into the woods and completed a 3 mile loop through a ravine. Lots of up and downs and some muddy trail at some points. It didn’t matter, the path was beautiful which outweighed the difficulty.


After popping out of the woods, there was a small bit where we wandered through park fields and roads before making it a highway that we followed for the last 3 plus miles back to the finish line. It was a well planned event, the course was well marked and overall I felt pretty darn good at the finish. Upon finishing, I made my way to one of the aid stations and hung out helping until the final runner passed. Then I went back to the finish line and helped cheer the remaining runners to the finish. It was a long day, challenging, fun and rewarding!

Race Report: Amana Freezer 5k

First race of the year!  Woohooo, it’s only been 23 days since my last ‘race’ yet it feels like it’s been so much longer.
12514006_10207075679443736_4821506229687828292_oToday was the Amana Colonies Winterfest, one of the events at the festival is the Freezer 5k.  2016 is the second year in a row I have run this event, both years the weather has been decent for January in Iowa.  At race time the temperature was about 21 degrees and sunny.   It was cool enough that I felt sluggish early on due to being cold at the start, that’s okay I picked up speed the further I ran.  Negative splits are always nice, I ended the race with a course PR as well as a PR at the 5k distance.  We are not talking just any PR, but one of more than 2 minutes!  I credit the PR to all the training I am doing for Phoenix in February, so excited to see the hard work paying off.

The course is relatively flat, it does have a few small hills as it turns around in East Amana.  After the race there are plenty of events that take place throughout the day as a part of the overall Festival.  Ham-Put seemed to be very popular, an event where participants see how far the can throw a ham, shot-put style.  One of my favorites is the Open Fire Chili, the opportunity to enjoy chili made by the Amana Fire Department while standing around an open fire.12565554_10207076070373509_2848452603824556558_n

When you just have to do more.

Today was a scheduled 16-18 mile run on the training plan.  All along I had intended to run 18, I want to test the longer distances when the plan calls for them.   Heading in to the weekend it was obvious that the weather was going to be less than desirable, especially today.  I couldn’t swap days and run the 18 on Saturday due to it being my Saturday to work.  I could not try to run them on Thursday or Friday due to work travel.

I resigned I was going to have to run indoors, this would be my longest indoor run to date.  Uggh!  The rest of the crew was able to run on Saturday, so it was up to me to get this done.  I showed up at the gym shortly after 5 am with a plan to get these miles in before the gym got too crowded.  I ran the first 5 miles around the track and then moved over to a treadmill.  Around mile 13 my brain decided I felt good and we were going to run 20 miles today.  What?!?  I have not run 20 miles before, and certainly not indoors.  I ran a total of 13.1 on the treadmill before moving back to the track to finish out the last 2 miles with Mom.


I am glad I did it, today I gained more confidence in my ability to get this done!  This evening my feet are a little sore, overall I feel great.   The weather next weekend is looking like it will be much better, even warmer than normal for a January in Iowa.  I’ll take it.



Miles last week – 38.86

MTD Miles – 109.68

What is the longest distance/time you have run on a treadmill?

What temperature do you consider too cold to run outside?

Phoenix in February

Several months ago I registered to run my fourth half marathon in Phoenix at the Phoenix Marathon.  This trip will be with a group of friends and fellow Team RWB members, most of whom are planning to run the full marathon.  My plan was to continue with a 9-13 mile run each week in order to stay conditioned for the distance over the winter.  Due to the need to have running partners on our local trail I started running with some of them, and began to increase my mileage as they did.

As of this week I am officially registered as a marathon participant.  Eeek!  I knew I wanted to run a full in 2016, but the original plan was for it to be much later in the year.  We are 48 days away, double Eeek!

Here is where we are at thus far in my training:

Miles last week – 41

January MTD Miles – 64.88

I can do this!!!


Running in to 2016

I finished out 2015 with a 3.1 mile run in the “Last Race of the Year” and started 2016 with a 1.6 mile run to finish the Runner’s World Winter 2015 Run Streak.

Now what?  I am already signed up for 4 races, one for each of the first 4 months.  I have a bucket list race that if all goes well in the next few hours I will be signed up for in May.  Is there more to keep me motivated between races and throughout my training?  Here is another challenge I stumbled across the Twelve Monthly Challenges over at No Meat Athlete.  I like having this type of challenge, it helps push me to do more, the goal is already out there for me.  I just have to go do it, in today’s busy world sometimes having the goal already set is the only push I need.

Challenge number one is a 30 day run streak, pretty sure I can handle that since I am on day 40 something already.  Let’s do this!

Running 2015 – The year in review


Total miles: 1491.9

Most memorable race: RAGNAR Colorado

I started 2015, by going for a solo run and taking on a monster of a hill just to show the new year that I was a FORCE to be reckoned with.  At that point, I had not run more than 5 miles in a race and never more than 7 miles at once in ‘training’.  I ended 2015 with the “Last Race of the Year” an annual fun race, this was my 3rd year participating.

In between that first run and that last run there were a lot of miles, new friendships formed, tough workouts and even some tears.  I also learned so much about myself along the way.  I never gave up and I continued to push, I learned that my body is capable of far more than my mind gave it credit for.  I did things that the me from 2014 would have never considered.

I wanted it to be a big year, and a big year it was!  I had planned for my first half marathon to take place in the first part of the year.  While training for that, I was asked by my cousin if I wanted to join a RAGNAR team.  I had to Google, RAGNAR because I didn’t know what it was.  I was immediately hooked, it was terrifying and exciting at the same time.  RAGNAR Colorado was the chosen event, it started on my birthday.  I just had to do this, leading up to the event I questioned my sanity multiple times.   In August I set off on an EPIC adventure with essentially 11 strangers, we shared close quarters for four days.  Two of those days spent in two vans traveling 200-ish miles while the team had at least one runner on the course at all times.  That is the brief description of the event in general, for me personally it was monumental and life changing.  I ran up and over a mountain and will never be the same.  The views were beautiful, the trail was challenging and I did it.  I know I can do anything.

My first and second half marathons rank right up there as memorable races for the year.  The first, well because it was the first attempt at that distance.  Empowering, I wasn’t fast but I got it done!  The second half was brutal, it was 98 degrees and humid, I got that one done too!

As I reflect on 2015 and think towards 2016, I realize it is not yet January 1st and I already have races scheduled in each of the first five months.  Only one of them is a 5k.

I plan to make 2016 even MORE EPIC than 2015!

Running Sasy, that’s me!

12087798_1507337796248880_4448534958602007782_oI’ve been running for two years, in reality my journey started well before then we will start here though.  I’m Stephanie a.k.a. Sasy, not to be confused with sassy although I might resemble that as well.  I wasn’t always a runner, two years ago I never dreamed of running a half marathon or thought I would consider a full marathon.  Those distances seemed out of reach for this girl who was never athletic growing up.

I was happy training for and running in the various 5k events around town.  I’ll be honest the first several included a fair amount of walking.  It wasn’t always easy, and some days it still isn’t,  I loved knowing I was pushing myself to achieve things I once thought out of reach.  As long as I had an upcoming race, I was happy to run throughout the week to stay conditioned enough to run when a 5k popped up.  Then I started thinking….

I could train for a half marathon, it would be awesome if I could run a half marathon before my next birthday.  It was would be a milestone year, and I had plenty of time to select a race, a training plan, and then train.  Which is exactly what I did, a funny thing happened along the way.  I gained strength, confidence, friends and a desire to continue to push my limits!  That half marathon went down, before my target birthday.  I took on the 13.1 distance twice more in the three months following that birthday.  Then I started thinking…

I could train for a full marathon, I would like to run just one full marathon.  Yeah, I am pretty sure this will hurt and I have to go for it!